Purple Dragons

The Purple Dragons are a professional standing army in the service of the Crown. They are well known for their skill, valour, loyalty and discipline. They have a clearly defined command structure with officers typically consisting of Knights. All Purple Dragons are volunteers; conscription has rarely been required and any conscripts would be part of the militia and nothe Purple Dragons.

Ranks

Enlisted Ranks

Purple Dragon Rank United States Equivalent
Blade Private, Corporal
First Sword Sergeant
Sword Major Master Sergeant

Commissioned Officer Ranks

Purple Dragon Rank United States Equivalent
Sword Captain Lieutenant
Lionar Captain
Ornrion Major, Lt. Colonel
Constal Colonel

High Command Ranks

Purple Dragon Rank United States Equivalent
Oversword Brigadier General, Major General
Battlemaster Lieutenant General, General
Lord High Marshal General of the Army

Organization and Unit Composition

The Purple Dragons are primarily organized into Regiments, each one consisting of one type of soldier. Different types of regiment will consist of a differing number of soldiers. For example an infantry regiment is 600 soldiers while a cavalry regiment is 500, yet they are both still referred to as regiments. These regiments are attached together as required to form armies.

Infantry

Infantry make up the main portion of the Purple Dragons. They perform a cast number of duties including patrolling the countryside, garrisoning cities and general peacekeeping. In large battles the infantry typically follows a cavalry charge into battle to take advantage of the disorganization.

Unit Type Men Composition
Squad 12 First Sword leads 10 Blades and a Royal Scout
Company 28 Sword Captain leads two squads, a Sword Major, a Royal Scout and a guidon. The company Sword Major fills the same role as an United States platoon sergeant
Kadrath 92 Lionar leads three companies and has a staff consisting of a guidon, two Sword Majors (a drillmaster and a campmaster), two Royal Scouts and two battlepriests
Battalion 289 Ornrion leads three kadrathen and has a staff consisting of a Lionar as an executive officer, three orderlies, a guidon, one Sword Major (a quartermaster), three Royal Scouts and three battlepriests
Regiment 600 Constal leads two battalions and has a staff consisting of an Ornrion as an executive officer, six orderlies, a guidon, a regimental Sword Major, six Royal Scouts and six battlepriests

Officers per Regiment:
Swordcaptains (18 Company COs) = 18
Lionars (6 Kadrath COs and 2 Battalion XOs) = 8
Ornrions (2 Battalion COs and 1 Regiment XO) = 3
Constal (Regiment CO) = 1
-———————————————————
TOTAL = 30

Light Infantry: As the name implies, lightly armed and armoured and favouring mobility over offensive and defensive power. Light infantry often patrol when cavalry is not available. During patrols they are typically mounted however they would dismount during combat. They excel as skirmishers and protecting the flanks and rear of heavier units but can be used as irregular archers.

Typical Equipment for Light Infantry
Enlisted: mostly studded leather armor with remainder being plain leather, shields optional, armed with sword and longbow, and sometimes with halberds during defensive actions.
Officer: chain shirts or occasionally scalemail or chainmail, armed with sword.

Medium Infantry: Medium infantry form the core of the battle line. They hold fast in defence and push forward in attacks.

Typical Equipment for Medium Infantry
Enlisted: scalemail or chainmail armor with shields, armed with sword and halberd.
Officer: scalemail or chainmail typically, or breastplate if they can afford it, armed with sword.

Heavy Infantry: While they are slower than other infantry units they are heavily armed and armoured. Heavy infantry are shock troops; they close with the enemy lines and crush through them. They are vulnerable to archers and cavalry attacks so lighter units are kept nearby to protect the flanks.

Typical Equipment for Heavy Infantry
Enlisted: splint or banded mail with shields, armed with halberds and a mixture of swords maces or morningstars.
Officer: splint or banded mail with shields, or some form of plate if they can afford it, armed with sword.

Cavalry

Cormyr fields primarily light cavalry with only one unit of medium cavalry (The Royal Cavalry Regiment, stationed in Suzail) currently formed. There is no heavy cavalry unit due to the extreme expense in maintaining one. The light cavalry is typically used for scouting and patrolling.

Unit Type Men Composition
Ride 8 First Sword leads 6 Blades and a Royal Scout
Lance 21 Sword Captain leads two rides, a Sword Major, a Royal Scout and a guidon. The company Sword Major fills the same role as an United States platoon sergeant
Troop 74 Lionar leads three lances and has a staff consisting of a guidon, two Sword Majors (a drillmaster and a campmaster), two Royal Scouts and two battlepriests
Squadron 238 Ornrion leads three troops and has a staff consisting of a Lionar as an executive officer, three orderlies, a guidon, one Sword Major (a quartermaster), three Royal Scouts and three battlepriests
Regiment 500 Constal leads two squadrons and has a staff consisting of an Ornrion as an executive officer, four orderlies, a guidon, a regimental Sword Major, six Royal Scouts and six battlepriests

Officers per Regiment:
Swordcaptains (18 Lance COs) = 18
Lionars (6 Troop COs and 2 Squadron XOs) = 8
Ornrions (2 Squadron COs and 1 Regiment XO) = 3
Constal (Regiment CO) = 1
-———————————————————
TOTAL = 30

Typical Equipment for Light Cavalry
Enlisted: mostly studded leather armor with remainder being plain leather, shields optional, armed with sword, light lance and longbow. Mounts will be either Golden Trotter, Duskwood Skewbald, or Emberhawk breeds of light warhorse. A rare few enlisted men might afford their own superior mounts such as Dambraii or Raurin light warhorses.
Officer: chain shirts or occasionally scalemail or chainmail, armed with sword, light lance and longbow. Mounts will be the same as that of the enlisted men for officers of less wealth, while wealthier officers will ride on Dambraii or Raurin light warhorses or even an occasional Cormyrean Destrier or Tharurr heavy warhorse.

Typical Equipment for Medium Cavalry
Enlisted: scalemail or chainmail armor and barding with shields, armed with sword, heavy lance, and longbow. Mounts will typically be either Amphailian black charger or Tantan Destrier breeds of heavy warhorse. A rare few enlisted men might afford their own superior mounts such as Cormyrean Destrier or Tharurr heavy warhorses.
Officer: plate armor of some sort, scale or chain barding for the horse, armed with sword, heavy lance and longbow. Mounts will be the same as that of the enlisted men for officers of lesser wealth, while wealthier officers will ride Cormyrean Destrier or Tharurr heavy warhorses.

Archers

Cormyr also fields professionally trained archers in the Purple Dragons. These archers are specifically trained for two missions: to provide supporting volley fire en masse to large armies in the field (as opposed to more individual arrowshot that is usually provided by light infantry or cavalry), and to provide defense from attacks coming from the air (e.g. a dragon attack). This means that units of archers generally do not get assigned independent missions and are attached to other units (usually infantry) to support them.

Unit Type Men Composition
Flight 24 Sword Captain leads a Sword Major, two First Swords and 20 Blades
Battery 100 Lionar leads 4 Flights and has a staff consisting of a guidon, campmaster and battlepriest

The Royal Corps of Monster Hunters

This is a special kadrath-sized unit. This unit is outfitted as heavy infantry, although each member of the unit also knows how to ride, and is composed as the toughest, most hard-bitten veterans in the Purple Dragons. Their function is to fight not armies, bandits, or raiders, but monsters of all sorts. They specialize in the tactics of fighting the wide variety of fell beasts that might be found in Cormyr.

This unit is considered so special and elite — composed of the toughest and most experienced veterans — that an oversword is given command of it. None of the men in this unit are of less than first sword rank, as it takes that much experience to prove oneself worthy of being assigned to the Monster Hunters. Also unlike regular units, the members of this corps come from all parts of Cormyr and even include some immigrants from outside the Forest Kingdom who have proven themselves. Although the regulation size of an infantry kadrath is 92 men, it is historically common for commanders of this elite unit to pad their numbers somewhat, so that a full force can be fielded even when some are on the sick or injured list. The actual number of men in the Monster Hunters thus fluctuates, and is currently about a hundred men.

Battlepriests

Battlepriests are the clerics that serve right beside the regular soldiers, using their divine magic in combat support and to heal the wounded. Unlike the War Wizards who are a completely separate organization, the battlepriests are fully integrated into the Purple Dragons and are assigned among the various units. Battlepriests share the same quarters and rations as the soldiers, have ranks and draw the same pay; they are every bit as much Purple Dragons as the soldiers themselves. As a courtesy to their status as holy men and women, battlepriests are never given the rank of blade. They are always at least First Swords and are often officers, although they are not in the chain of command nor are they given command of units.

The Royal Scouts

Royal Scouts are another special kind of Purple Dragon. The Royal Scouts are an elite force of Purple Dragons who have demonstrated skill at stealthy movement and survival. Royal scouts serve a variety of functions. Many Royal Scouts are fully integrated into the unit structure and serve with all units of any size, and often serve as point men or flankers to units as they move so that the unit commander knows what is about him and can avoid ambushes, or in larger units serve as messengers to relay orders to subordinate units and return replies to the unit commander. They are also deployed individually or in small groups on special missions of their own, in which case they are used as messengers and spies. In the latter role, they can be found anywhere in the Dragonreach and along the Dragon coast. The very best of the Royal Scouts are assigned to a special unit composed entirely of Royal Scouts called the King’s Messengers.

The King’s Messengers

The King’s Messengers are a special unit composed entirely of the best and most trusted of the Royal Scouts. They serve as the King’s personal corps of messengers and couriers. It is organized as a light troop composed of two lances and is commanded by an ornrion. All King’s Messengers are of at least the rank of first sword, and generally each member of the light troop is one rank higher than he would be in a normal cavalry unit.

Current Manpower

Type Regiments Total men
Light Infantry 15 9000
Medium Infantry 4 2400
Heavy Infantry 1 600
Total Infantry 20 12000
Light Cavalry 4 2000
Medium Cavalry 1 500
Total Cavalry 5 2500
Archers 9 900
Royal Corps of Monster Hunters 1 100
Total Forces 30 15500

Major Garrisons

Numbers listed below are for the area – portions of these soldiers will be in forts, outposts and minor towns in the surrounding area.

Suzail: 4420 Purple Dragons
Marsember: 3000 Purple Dragons
Arabel: 3000 Purple Dragons (only 1300 in the city, remainder serve in the Army of the East in forts and outposts)

Much of this info is from Jerry Davis’ excellent article at candlekeep.com

Purple Dragons

Into the Shadow valdus